18 | 02 | 18


Theater mobil
05 | 12 | 2013
1 h 0 min
12 and older



a play for the classroom by Karen Köhler

Your heroes – my dreams //

»If you were a superhero, what special powers would you have?«


If I were a superhero, I would stop time. Right before something bad happened. I’d stretch out my arms in a pose and bang – Shazamm! …Time would stand still. Right before my father flew off the handle. Right before someone had to hand in a test. Right before someone was going to punch me in the face. Or the other way around. Shazamm! Stop. Let me think a sec...Or I could make everyone respect me. Whenever I said something, everyone would immediately listen up. Or I could make people fall in love with me.

The DNT asked to me to write a play for the 2013/14 season. My idea was to write a classroom play for pupils between the ages of 11 and 15 – a one-actor piece for performance in schools, in a classroom.

Using the working title »Deine Helden – Meine Träume« (Your Heroes – My Dreams), I started collecting material for the play. I’m a writer and live in Hamburg. So what do I know about 11- to 15-year-olds in and around the region of Weimar? Nada. Let’s say very little. That’s why I decided to get to know them. I was interested in learning what they were interested in, what they were afraid of, who their heroes were, whether they had dreams and what they wished for. I started by designing a survey, which I would use to interview the pupils. I would then integrate their answers into the theme of the play.

What does »home« mean to you? Do you feel a longing for it? And if so, why? Not so easy. For me, home is a place where everything is familiar. But also an inner retreat where I don’t have to explain myself. For me, home isn’t tied to any real location. I’ve already lived in too many places in my life.

I asked the pupils about family, home, their experience with violence, about their music, interests and fears. I asked them about what bugs them. I want to put my finger on things that are uncomfortable. On the sources of their anger, fear or powerlessness. These might be anchored in their familial environment, but also social life. We live in a world which exploits our weakness to resist temptation to the point of perversion. Every day our needs are sacrificed at the altar of profit maximisation. It inflates our consumption-driven ego and shifts it to the centre of a world that seems to move faster and faster every day. We are bombarded by masses of information and possibilities, and in the digital sphere, we live in a state of permanent overload. We have to constantly make decisions. And those who cannot participate in the consumption craze are kicked out. What is it like to grow up in this kind of world? And what happens when strong structures begin offering an alternative to that world?

Unfortunately I have no super powers. But I will write a play. For Weimar and Thuringia. And I’m looking forward to it.

Karen Köhler